Wednesday, 21 February 2018

It's Hard Hats & A Henna Tattoo for William and Kate's Visit to Sunderland!

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge travelled almost 300 miles from London for two engagements in Sunderland today.


The Palace said the visit was planned to "showcase the city's vibrant arts scene and engineering talent." Keith Merrin, chief executive of Sunderland Culture, added: “The timing of the royal visit couldn’t have been better, with so much happening already in the city’s cultural sector and some exciting news to be announced in the coming months.”


William and Kate's first stop was The Fire Station, one of Sunderland’s most iconic buildings, recently converted into a music and arts hub.


On arrival, the couple met members of the local community.


The Duchess chatting to two very special police officers :)


William greeted a very important guest, Jane, 101 years old!


Jayne told Kate her brother used to work at the Fire Station.


The Fire Station houses a dance studio, drama studio and a heritage centre. A £3.5m transformation was completed last year thanks to a £2.4m Heritage Lottery Fund grant. The building stood empty for 22 years before becoming a significant part of the Music, Arts and Culture Trust’s plans to create a £10m cultural quarter centred on The Fire Station and an adjacent new £8m auditorium, where work will commence soon.


The Station is also home to popular bar and eatery 'The Engine Room'.


They watched a Bollywood dancers performance.


The Duke and Duchess saw a local class take part in a Live Tales story writing session and a Dance Jam workshop in The Fire Station’s first-floor studios.


Applause for the talented young performers.


William and Kate met Little Inventors - a terrific project turning children's inventions into reality.


The Duke and Duchess unveiled a plaque.


Their next stop was The Engine Room.


Kate meeting staff.


The couple met young people.


Kate got a Henna flower tattoo on her hand.


Richard Palmer said she also took some bindi for Princess Charlotte to wear on her forehead.

More from the Mail Online:

'Chatting to a group from Young Asian Voices at the Fire Station Arts Centre, Kate asked if one of the girls would draw a henna design on her hand. The Duchess seemed delighted when Shajida Begum, 18, drew a black flower with a swirl.
Miss Begum said: 'I said 'Would you like a design?' and she was like 'Yes, if you don't mind'. 'She was saying that it was really pretty. 'I was just telling her how it works. I was telling her when she can wash it off - I said 'when it becomes flakey'. Kate also asked the girls for a pack of bindis, which she said she wanted for her daughter Charlotte.'

Below we see the tattoo.


Next, The Duke and Duchess travelled to see the Northern Spire, an ambitious and striking new bridge over the River Wear.


The Duchess arrived sporting her new tattoo.


William and Kate adhered to safety regulations wearing safety glasses, hard hats and high visibility jackets.


We're used to seeing Kate in hats by Jane Taylor and Lock & Co. Before you all ask at once... Kate's hard hat was supplied by Sunderland City Council :)


The 1,550-tonne pylon structure is twice as high as Nelson’s Column and taller than Big Ben's clock tower. It weighs the equivalent of 125 double decker buses.


As a Sunderland City Council project, Northern Spire is a key part of a wider transport plan to improve links between the Port of Sunderland and the city centre with the A19. It will help attract new jobs and investment and will be the catalyst for major economic and regeneration benefits to Sunderland and the region.


William tightened a bolt on the new bridge.


William joked: "We'll walk away and the bolt will drop out".


They met construction workers and engineers who made the bridge a reality.


William and Kate met local children whose generation will benefit from the bridge in the future.


The Duchess debuted a new green Dolce & Gabbana military style coat with gold buttons today. It bears notable similarities to the plum coat Kate wore in Oslo earlier this month. Middleton Maven contacted the brand and they informed her it's a "custom piece" which can be ordered by calling their boutiques.


Kate's dress is by her go-to maternity brand Seraphine. The Phaedra Woven Maternity dress is described as "Dress is a classic choice for every stage of pregnancy. Made in soft woven fabric, the flattering A-line shape drapes beautifully over your figure, while a curved empire waist highlights your slimmest point." With thanks to the lovely Susan from What Kate Wore for the swift ID!


The Duchess wore her Tod's pumps.


Kate changed into her Russell & Bromley HalfNHalf boots at the bridge.


Kate carried her green Emmy suede clutch.


The Duchess accessorised with her Mappin & Webb Empress earrings.


And her trusty Cartier Ballon Bleu watch.


I always enjoy the 'away days' and today was certainly no exception. William and Kate appeared to enjoy every moment of their time in Sunderland. We leave you with another great photo from James Whatling!


Kate has three engagements scheduled for next week.

27 February - The Duchess will visit the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists to learn more about the College’s global health programmes to reduce maternal and newborn mortality worldwide, and will attend a roundtable discussion on tackling the stigma around women’s health.

Later that day, Kate will visit St Thomas' Hospital to officially launch a campaign to promote nursing worldwide. Her Royal Highness will visit a specialist ward, take part in a roundtable discussion and deliver a speech to mark the launch of the Nursing Now campaign.

28 February - The Duchess of Cambridge, Patron of the National Portrait Gallery, will visit the exhibition 'Victorian Giants: The Birth of Art Photography'. Forming the Gallery's first Patron's Trail, Kate has selected images from the exhibition for which she has written personal captions that will be displayed alongside the photographs. The Duchess has also written a foreword to the exhibition catalogue.

I imagine Kate will be going on maternity leave very soon. We don't know when the baby is due in April, but it seems safe to assume she's nearing the 8 month stage now.

168 comments:

  1. very first impression...from the very first pic, you'd never know that woman is 7 months pregnant. She looks amazing!

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    1. She certainly does! And her bending down to greet children and people in wheelchairs - in heels! I would have never imagined doing that when I was at that stage in pregnancy without the presence of something or someone who'll need to help me stand back up!

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    2. Lol Amelia you summed up both my pregnancies perfectly! If I sat down, I would remain in that spot for about an hour or so but Kate looks so comfortable bending down like she did.

      Also, I love that she got a henna tattoo. The cultural element of the visit was lovely and I would love to see Princess Charlotte wearing a bindi :)

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    3. She does look amazing! I think she is outwardly beautiful, but what sets her aside (to me) is the combo with her inner beauty. I believe that combination makes her just radiate beauty & kindness & fun! :)

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  2. I love awaydays like these. They are basicaly one of the pillars of royal work and it's so fun seeing them out around the country.

    Haha, Kate's really into those D&G bottoned coats nowdays. She's probably like me, finds a style I like and buy many many similar ones :P Kind of relatable! Except the Dolce & Gabbanna part of it all of course!

    Looking forward to the rest of the day!

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  3. Looks like a beautiful day for a royal visit. I saw a photo of Kate bending to the level of an elderly woman in a wheelchair and holding her hand. So sweet. Looking forward to more photos. Love the green on her!

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    1. I was so taken with that photo too, Renny. Kate looks beautiful. She really shines at these walkabouts.

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  4. I knew this was a D&G coat, it's so similar to the plum coat Kate wore on the final day of the Sweden / Norway tour.

    Although I'm having a difficult time trying to figure out why Kate hardly wears maternity stuff. I mean she is 7 months pregnant after all. To me, a coat with so many buttons on a pregnant woman looks really constricting. Just thinking out loud.

    Love Avee in SA

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    1. Hi Avee :) I see it as that she is wearing maternity wear. It's just been designed by non traditional maternity designers. I also think they have been made bespoke with the intention that the designs can be altered post pregnancy for continued wear. :)

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    2. Becca USA, you make an excellent point. I had not even considered that some of the pieces Kate wears could be altered post baby! It would be great to see some of these lovely coats again :)

      Thanks Becca :)

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  5. At first glance, this coat is almost a duplicate of the plum coloured one worn on the tour. I liked that one but have to admit that makes it a boring sight today. I hope we get to see what she is wearing underneath.

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    1. Agreed—nearly a duplicate. She could have re-worn the plum (would also work fine with today’s dress) and avoided another multi-button staid coat that won’t fit in a few months. I hink the boots looked great and wonder why she didn’t stick with those all day.

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    2. We're going to see this coat in the future. The panel is removable so it can be worn post pregnancy

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  6. A lovely color for the coat. Way better than the plum in Scandinavia. And a very lovely dress. Her hair is growing long again and side part seems more popular again. Yeahhh!

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    1. I loved the plum color of the coat in Scandinavia. I love her in green, also, but I think the plum is more striking. I do love the dress, and that she's back to the side part again.

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    2. I love all of the Seraphine dresses. I passed the shop on Kensington High Street when I was in London last month, and was almost going to pop in and buy one for myself, even though I'm not pregnant!

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    3. ๐ŸŒธ Pam. Now that is really the “Kate effect”, lol. (I think the dress is pretty also. A good “go to” dress
      for anyone.)

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    4. Pam, how was your London trip, btw? Did you hubby enjoy the pipes? ๐Ÿ˜‰ And did you see any royals, or at least places connected with them?

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  7. I don't think the Duchess has ever looked so happy. She glows. Her outfit is perfect for the day. I'm happy for both of them. A lovely time in life.

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  8. Needing style in California21 February 2018 at 14:14

    I hope this is ok with you, Charlotte.

    Hi DKB readers! Can I ask for some style help? I rarely comment but I read most of them, and I think a lot of you have great style intuition that I just don’t have. We have an event in a few weeks, and I don’t know how to style my cocktail dress. This is a link to it (yes, I bought a dress off amazon, but it’s very flattering on me and easy on the budget!).
    https://www.amazon.com/MEROKEETY-Womens-Sleeveless-Elegant-Cocktail/dp/B01NCQ6M5L

    I got it in Royal blue, and I have some black high heel sandals that look cute with it (the kind with an ankle strap and a strap over the toe). But I don’t know how to wear my hair or what sort of earrings/bracelet would look good with this. I assume I should wear my hair up somehow because of the neckline, but nothing looks right. My hair is about an inch or two past my shoulders.

    If anyone is able to offer some suggestions, I would appreciate it!

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    1. Pretty dress, NSIC! I look forward to hearing from the fashionistas on the blog. I would suggest gold statement earrings and a gold bracelet. What about wearing your hair in soft, loose waves?

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    2. That is a very pretty dress! For styling, I would do a half updo for your hair, with big statement earrings (so you could really see them). Depending on your hair type, something like this might work (https://www.thesmallthingsblog.com/2011/08/half-up-to-full-updo/). You could also try the full updo to see if you like that. I'd also do a bigger bracelet or a bigger ring (not both the ring and the bracelet.) You'll look great!!

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    3. Great Dress at a Great Price! :) I think you can't go wrong with your hair, up or down. I think no necklace, as to not detract from the lovely neckline, which is a statement in itself. I would suggest a classic but conservative metal (gold or silver color metal) & crystal earring. Then a cocktail ring (in same metal color chosen) & bracelet or bracelets in same color metal with or without crystals. Just my 2 cents. I know you will look lovely! :) xo

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    4. Tammy from California21 February 2018 at 17:21

      The dress is very pretty!! I like KimK's suggestion of loose waves, or go with an up-do like the model in the picture of Kate's Seraphine dress. It's a wavy, causal-yet-elegant type of up-do.

      I have no idea on jewelry, I am a horrible dresser. My hair and make-up are usually as far as I get. What color are the buckles on the sandals? I might start there and match my jewelry color to the color of the buckles.

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    5. Caroline in Montana21 February 2018 at 17:52

      ok, needing style, I'm no fashionista but I can agree with those who are!!
      Very pretty dress first of all and really like the hair style that KLG suggested, agree with Becca USA on the No Necklace, just not the dress for it. I lean more toward silver than gold and one bracelet and one ring (matching color) and love the idea of crystal earring! that should do the trick! you will look great, I hope you have a great time at your event! let us know:)

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    6. ๐ŸŒธ awhh. You guys are so sweet. Love it. :)

      Welcome “Needing Style Help in California”. :)
      You came to the right place. Smart thinking. :)

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    7. Hi Needing Style! I'm beaming at your comment because if any community can be your stylist, it's this one! :) This dress is fantastic and the lace reminds me of Kate's green Temperley London gown: https://ca.hellomagazine.com/fashion/gallery/02017032834420/kate-middleton-alice-temperley-national-portrait-gallery/1
      For that reason, I say let your shoulder-length hair down! KLG mentioned a Small Things blog tutorial already, which is one of my very favorites hairstyle sources! She just posted a tutorial on blow dry tips, which I found really helpful and might be useful to you for the start of hairstyling: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IpFpgvVcb4I
      Whatever you decide, your confidence will make it sparkle! Hope the event is a blast!

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    8. First off, that is a gorgeous dress!!! In my opinion, I think you should curl into some nice beachy waves (like Kate wore at Wimbledon with the Catherine Walker dress last year) and put it half up and half down. That way, the gorgeous collar of that dress can be seen. And since your hair is back you can wear some nice earrings and show them off - perhaps pearl drops? And a pearl bracelet as well if you have one? If you don`t have pearls I would suggest nice diamond and silver earrings and a silver bracelet.

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    9. You could definitely rock half up, half down hair with beachy waves. Or an unstructured, loose updo sort of like this one: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/Ado6PyGlhz45rufnhcpOxk9V1H9524KjgjMjt2E_Q4BXf9TkVoPvn6M/
      or
      https://www.pinterest.com/pin/361625045060831313/

      I love the dress! I would wear statement earrings with it and maybe a couple bangles on one wrist and with that color you could do either silver or gold jewelry!

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    10. I'll leave hairstyles to those more knowledgeable than me but it is a gorgeous blue dress - very Kate-like, and I'm sure you'll feel wonderful in it -wishing you a lovely time.

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    11. If I were to wear the dress, I'd wear pearls. A creamy white would be more elegant than gold or silver. I would definitely have statement earrings. Lot's of rings and layered bracelets. Or a very long pearl rope and not so many bracelets.

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    12. Tammy from California21 February 2018 at 23:12

      @CourtneyFromNC: I have said this before: you can style me ANYTIME.

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    13. NSIC - you didn't mention what the event is - or where it's going to held. That could impact suggestions/ideas. Want to share?

      Great dress - can't go wrong. I love that you stated, "it very flattering on me." Confidence Baby!

      I would do pearls with lace. :-) agree with previous poster. But if you don't have them statement earrings - also agreed with previous poster. What type of hair do you have?

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    14. Such a lovely dress! If I were to style that for myself (blonde, blue eyes) I'd go with silver earrings and a bangle such as, eg

      https://www.silver.uk.com/silver-earrings/Zen-Earrings_E3927.htm?ne=AgAAAI8AAAAEDVNpbXBseSBTaWx2ZXKOAAAABAREcm9w

      https://www.silver.uk.com/silver-bangles/Midnight-Wave-Bangle_BGL682.htm

      Hair-wise, I'd go with a high side part and anchor one side with a comb such as, eg

      http://www.catherinemee.co.uk/diamante-hair-comb.html

      Wishing you lots of fun and happiness wearing your new dress !!! :-)

      S.B.

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    15. Oh I Love How We Are Coming Together To Help Style One of Our DKB Sisters! (aka "Charlotte's Girls") Love you all! :) xoxo

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    16. Needing style in California22 February 2018 at 17:42

      Wow! I’m really touched and appreciative that so many of you took the time to help! In some ways my style is simple like Kate’s, but I’ve seen so many comments about how a small styling change could make her outfits pop, so that’s why I wanted to ask here. I never know how to accessorize.

      The event is in a couple of weeks, so i have time to practice the different hair ideas and see what works (and what i can actually pull off with my limited hair styling skills). My hair is a little wavy and will hold curl if I take the time style it. I’m so thankful for the links and ideas!

      I really had no idea what to do with jewelry! I might have some statement earrings that will work but will have to go shopping next week and see if I can find a bracelet and/or ring.

      The event is a fundraiser for a charity. Men will be in suit and tie, and women will be in little black dresses or cocktail dresses. Based on the photos from previous years, any of the hair and jewelry options will be appropriate formality-wise.

      Thank you all again! I can’t tell you how much I appreciate the ideas.

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  9. She took off her coat! Will wonders never cease.

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    1. Tammy from California21 February 2018 at 23:13

      I can't stop laughing at your post. You had this same question a few posts ago when she was in Sweden right? "Will wonders never cease" really got me laughing.

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  10. Yay!!! A MATERNITY dress!! When she finally dresses to suit her figure, she knocks it out of the park! This is so pretty and flattering. She hardly looks pregnant it's so well tailored.

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    1. Her maternity dress print reminds me of the stars in the sky,,:-)

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    2. A much better length than yesterday's Erdem

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  11. I like these kinds of engagements when they visit less known places in the UK. As Rebecca said, they are the staples and pillars of royal work. Standard work wardrobe for Kate, but I like the addition of the Seraphine dress. She is really quite stunning no matter what she wears and I think a local journalist has mentioned how everyone she met has been saying that.

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  12. Looks like the emmy natasha clutch in a custom colour

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  13. She presents herself with such polish and class. Effortless.

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    1. Yes she does!! There is also a genuineness to her that is refreshing! cc

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  14. Oh Kate and her buttons!! Love it! Looks so happy and cheery!

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  15. It is beautiful how they interact with people and give their a bit of happiness when they give a handshake or say some nice words.
    I love this kind of engagements when couple meet with habitants and local organisations. It is interesting and joyful.
    Interesting and pleasant colour of coat. Dress is perfect for pregnancy time.

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  16. The 'Bollywood" Dance on the song 'Ghoomar' from a recent & fabulous Hindi movie, Padmaavat; the 'henna tattoo' called Mehendi and the Bindi... It's like they were in a Mini India :)
    She looks beautiful, glowing & happy :)

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    1. ๐ŸŒธ Thanks for the info, Nam. Did the Mehendi represent a message or specific words?

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    2. ๐ŸŒธ Nope. Charlotte included the info. It was a simple flower.

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  17. I keep hoping she will repeat some of her previous maternity wear. Though she seems bigger this time, so maybe they don't fit quite right. A new coat for every day is very expensive! I realize they are the British Royal Family and can certainly afford it. I wonder if these new coats will be able to be altered to for post pregnancy wear. Love the dress. She looks beautiful, but that is nothing new.

    Hope from USA

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    1. I've been looking back and from what I can see she has only 3-4 coats from her earlier pregnancies that might fit on her body and the season. She's been working way more this time around and add to that a cold Scandinavian tour and there has been quite a few new pieces needed. I myself have been wondering if some might be able to be taken in. She'll probably do like many other mothers too and give/sell clothes to friends or maybe Pippa in the future. Either way, while it's a bit too many new clothes now maybe I can see the reason for it!

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    2. I agree she looks lovely, but everyone looks lovely with new clothing - would like to see repeat outfits, esp coats. Love following this blog, but seems excessive to have so many coats when the royal family should be setting tone for less extravagance. Has anyone counted the number of black coats? Or green coats?

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    3. Hi Hope, I completely agree that so many expensive, new coats that will probably never be worn again is more than a bit frivolous. I was really hoping that she would re-wear the coats from the recent tour, maybe style them differently with a colorful scarf or brooch.

      Rebecca, I don't know if it would be proper for her to give/sell clothes to her sister as official wardrobe is paid for from her FIL.

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    4. I believe that now that they are Full-time Working Royals, we will see her wardrobe grow. Just as Camilla & The Queen have larger wardrobes to match the busier they are with Events & Visits. I also believe that Kate has chosen so many bespoke non traditional maternity pieces by non traditional designers, so that they would not look like classic maternity clothes & would have been made/designed to be adapted back to regular post pregnancy wear. Just my hunch.

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    5. Since June last year, she seams to not repeat so often her wardrobe, maybe as a full time royal she have a raise in her wardrobe's budget, and now she is pregnant and her body changes everyday so the new clothes are understandable and I think that this coat was ordered before the trip or maybe that some engagements require new clothes .

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    6. Yeah, I am not sure some of her other coats would fit her at this point. Personally, I think even this new green coat pulls a bit across her baby belly.

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    7. American Army Wife21 February 2018 at 17:42

      Everyone does not look lovely in new clothing. I wish that were true, even if only for me. ;) The clothes she is wearing right now fit her pregnancy and frankly her duties. I am also sure the coats are varied not only in size because of three pregnancies and body changes from aging but in fabric weight and lining for different seasons, climates and temperatures within those two considerations. I think there is a way to look extravagant and she does not, within the context of her actual position and duties.

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    8. Caroline in Montana21 February 2018 at 17:57

      Lauri, I am just wondering who said that her "new coats that will probably never be worn again?" if that is true I could possibly agree with you, but I just don't see how you know that? and I think she is much larger now than on her recent tours so I can see how those coats would not fit and she could not wear them at present. and curious about her clothing budget, how would we know which pieces were paid for by her, after all they do have their own money and what was paid for by the BRF? so if she gave/loaned a pregnancy coat to her Sister how would anyone know who paid? seems a bit fussy really.

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    9. @ Hope USA: I imagine Catherine will wear many of her coats for years to come since most of them are classic designs. I bet her grandchildren will be combing through her closet just like I did mine for some of her beautiful clothes which I still wear today. My granny's navy cashmere princess coat from the sixties still gets compliments all these years later. I think if you look at Catherine's wardrobe as an investment instead of an indulgence it might not seem frivolous so to you.

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    10. I read once that Diana gave clothing to Fergie, but with the re-working of the garment, one could barely tell

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    11. Hi Caroline, well I said that but if you look at all the new clothing Kate has worn in the 7 years she's been in the BRF and how many have not been worn again, I think it's pretty safe to say that many of her coats will not be worn again. To be fair though Kate does wear favorite items many times.

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    12. To be fair, though, Lauri - we only know what she wears to public events.

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    13. Kate is working far more than she has before in late pregnancy and her previous pregnancy when she wore things like the Dalmatian coat and the pink Trooping coat were later in the year - it is very cold right now.

      But because she does wear her clothes cut tight - that means even the coats she wore just a few weeks ago in Scandinavia may be too tight now - if she had worn those a little looser - she might have been able to squeeze into them now, but of course it wouldn't have looked so sleek. Diana did wear repeats during her pregnancy with William - Harry was a summer pregnancy - by wearing her coats looser - she also had maternity clothes remade for later use - although frankly you could tell they were remade - not just if you remembered the earlier garment. She even wore a remake for the Trooping as I recall.

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  18. A perfect ensemble for the day, and she looks wonderful. Happy to see the side part return. William might have smartened up those trousers a bit.

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  19. She even makes a hard hat & safety glasses look good! ;)

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    1. I was thinking the exact same thing.

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    2. Haha! Its so unfair, isn't it? ;)

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    3. ๐ŸŒธ Kiwi Gal. Yep. She could be the poster girl for hard hats and safety glasses. :)

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    4. I found great replikates of the hat and safety glasses at my local hardware store! hahaha

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    5. Poster girl for hard hats and safety glasses,,LOL :-)

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    6. ๐ŸŒธ “Replicates for Kate’s hat and safety glasses at the local hardware store”. lol lol Sharyn. That made me laugh out loud. Love it. :)

      Do send us a link. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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  20. Great to see the duchess in my home town, unfortunately I haven't lived there for last 20 years... or I would've joined the crowds as I did when Diana visited some 30+ years ago.
    Catherine looks so relaxed and pretty, and I love the black boots and shoes, I've commented so before, better than granny skin tone.
    loved the whole look,

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  21. Seรฑorita Dee21 February 2018 at 15:19

    Ahhh. Maternity wear. Seraphine dresses are so comfortable. I had a few myself when pregnant. She looks so good when she wears actual maternity pieces while pregnant. Lovely engagement they look happy and relaxed and love seeing them interact with the public.

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  22. How is it she’s able to look even more gorgeous in the safety glasses and hard hat?!?!

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    1. Lol, I was going to say the same thing ;)
      Also, I'm glad to see the return of the more defined side part.

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  23. I love the photo of Will & Kate walking in Hard Hats & looking at & chatting with each other. They still look at each other with as much love & fun as they did in College! One has to really understand how special that is & to appreciate it. :) xoxo

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    1. ๐ŸŒธ Amen. Becca USA. It is very special. :)

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  24. Thank you for the hard hat ID - very cute ;)

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    1. ๐ŸŒธ Yes, That was cute, Charlotte. I was just wanting to buy some this week. How did you know??? ๐Ÿ˜ณ



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    2. Charlotte, I Love The Hard Hat I.D. :) lol

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    3. Charlotte,,will this hat be on the list of hats Kate wore this year, for the best hat vote? ;-) Jest kidding :-)

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  25. The coat is pretty and so it the dress. I prefer the burgundy coat out of these two. The lines - there is a horizontal at the pockets on the burgundy coat - adds to the coat.

    It's green - might she attend the St. Patrick's event? A girl can hope.

    Great event!

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    1. Caroline in Montana21 February 2018 at 18:01

      Elle, that is a wonderful awesome thought! I so hope she does as I always like to see her and I love that event. my fingers are crossed!!

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    2. ๐ŸŒธ Elle. Oh my. That is coming up isn’t it? Hopefully no drama. Will she be there. Won’t she be there. And it would be nice for her to repeat this green coat. I’m all for repeats. BUT since she had that no attendance thing before though I would like to see Kate honor the soldiers by wearing a new coat. ๐Ÿ€

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    3. Tammy from California21 February 2018 at 23:16

      And maybe boots this time so her heel doesn't get stuck in a grate ;)

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    4. ๐ŸŒธ Yep. And a discreet little doggy treat to keep Domnhall at his best behavior. ๐Ÿถ

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  26. I love Kate bending down to visit with & hold "Jane's" arm. I think it may be one of my favorite moments caught on camera! The look on Kate's face, I believe is a peek into the affection & love she felt for her own grandparents. Diana had a Pow when it came to interacting with people, but to me Kate has a softness that is just as powerful. :) xoxo

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    1. Thanks for sharing that Becca, when I watched the video I thought, "she's actually trying to get a hold of the woman's hand so that she can be "skin to skin' That's just so personal and wonderful.

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  27. I love this coat on Kate & I loved the burgundy one on The Scandinavian Tour. I also believe they were designed for her as maternity wear, but in such a way as to be adapted back to post pregnancy wear. I believe we will see these again. I love double breasted & military style coats, so I'm predisposed to being a fan! :)

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  28. Catherine's compassion and love was evident when she reached out to hold hands with Jane, the 101 year old woman sitting in a wheelchair, not to mention, immediately reminiscent of Princess Diana, as she knelt next to her, and kept her hand on Jane's. Wow, what a beautiful moment, capturing Catherine's "public figure" side giving way to her true "human" side. Hands are acutely sensitive, and touch is a powerful mechanism for communicating love, comfort, and healing. I've heard it said that holding the hand of an elderly person benefits them more than any pills can. Catherine and Jane's exchange was moving for me to watch.

    While I'm not a huge fan of the military style coat, sartorially speaking, Catherine looked very happy and relaxed. She seems to really be coming into her own, so to speak, and looks more and more confident and at ease at her engagements, as time goes on. Even her recent speaking engagements have shown marked improvement in her delivery, overall poise, and presence.

    What a lovely lady.

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    1. Oh eclaires, So So Well Said! I Completely Agree! She is Truly Such A Treasure! How blessed are her Family & Friends, not to mention The UK~:) xo

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    2. ๐ŸŒธ That she is, eclaires. Beyond just regal. She’s naturally full of joy and grace. ๐Ÿ‘ธ๐Ÿป

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    3. eclaires, I couldn't agree more! The sensitive and warm personality is a true gift of Kate's.

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  29. Love her outfit. She looks gorgeous. I really like the coat and the dress. Unlike others i think she looks very pregnant. I doubt any of her other maternity wear would work for these outings, maybe she has something in her closet from prior pregnancies but often your size really is quite different from pregnancy to pregnancy. I am always struck by how great she looks laughing. Her face is very animated. She and William both looked great and it was a fun outing with all the different activities.

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    1. She looks very pregnant. Somehow I hope a bit (for her) that she is due earlier in April, and not as late as with Charlotte. Can you imagine her being pregnant for another 2.5 months?

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  30. Tammy from California21 February 2018 at 17:13

    I wish she would have worn her hair like the model in the picture for her dress. That is a beautiful hairstyle.

    I agree with some other posters: how is it she looks even more beautiful in a hard hat and glasses?

    Surfer Girl probably knows this, as I believe she said she lives in this area, but in San Diego California, they re-purposed an unused navy base into something similar to this firehouse. There are artisans, mostly for food, and it is amazing.

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    1. ๐ŸŒธ Tammy. Yep. It is called Liberty Station. Nice shops and restaurants and promenades. And, they very much needed a shopping center in that area and there are lots of military families in that area also. So it is very fitting. :)

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    2. Yah, that was a great hair style! Soft and romantic but pulled together!

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    3. Tammy, I love the hairstyle of the model in the picture, it has an undone structure to it. Kate seems to opts for a more polished look for her engagements and (hopefully) maybe does this "undone" style for her casual days. It is a beautiful hairstyle! Kate looks lovely and is glowing....even in a hard hat and safety glasses! cc

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    4. Tammy from California21 February 2018 at 23:09

      @SurferGirl: yes, that's it. It's a really neat place. I remember the common area where you can sit and eat had a cute name to it like this post's "Engine Room" but something Navy-ish.

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  31. I really don't see the need for a new Dolce & Gabbana coat, especially one so similar to the plum coat Kate already wore in Norway earlier this month. I liked the Seraphine dress, and was glad Kate elected to take her coat off indoors. I got a henna tattoo years ago, and I remember it lasting for quite some time. Maybe it will be visible still at Kate's next engagement?

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    1. ๐ŸŒธ Anne. Princess Charlotte will love it no doubt. And she’ll insist on getting one herself. And right away. Just guessing. :)

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    2. Ha ha, SG, you are giving me a mental picture of Princess Charlotte in her nursery class showing off her tattoo (hand drawn by her mother, no doubt), and the "Charlotte Effect" kicks in with ALL the little girls going home and demanding tattoos. I wonder if they already are demanding things that PC wears to nursery?

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    3. ๐ŸŒธ Marci. lol. I can see that happening. Really. :)

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    4. Yes! Charlotte is probably loving the tattoo and her bindi.

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    5. Marci, I'm laughing because you reminded me about my grand daughter. She actually looks so much like Princess Charlotte that it's become so universal in her little world, that at her school & neighborhood & in our extended family she's called Princess Charlotte. lol At first she didn't understand until my daughter showed her a photo online. She said " Mama, that little girl looks like me":) So when My Daughter was recently in London, she bought the identical Pink backpack for our grand daughter for school & Kensington has a "Princess Charlotte" Little Girls' Dress up Gown ( ala Queen Victoria's Cousin Charlotte who died, leaving Victoria next in line). I was cracking up because I heard my grand daughter on the phone asking her Mom for a "Princess Charlotte" Dress & I'm realizing she's thinking "Disney Princess type costume? I'm then thinking "well that is not going to happen"! Then here my daughter returns with a lovely Princess Charlotte 18th Century Costume. So there Was a "Princess Charlotte Costume" for purchase at Kensington Palace after all! :) lol So I can personally attest that the "Princess Charlotte Effect" is alive & well already! lol :)

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    6. That's adorable Becca!

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    7. Oh Rebecca I about Died when my daughter pulled out The "Princess Charlotte Costume Dress"! When I heard my grand daughter reminding her Mommy, on the phone, to be sure to bring home a "Princess Charlotte Costume" I just cringed, thinking "Well That Is So Not Going To Happen"! Then to find out KP was selling a Very Purple 18th Century Princess Charlotte Dress Up Ball Gown? I was like.... Who Knew??? All was well & Our Own Princess Charlotte is living in it! :) Do any of you remember how Claudia Bradbury created a limited edition "Princess Charlotte Necklace" when Charlotte was born? I purchased 2 for my grand daughters but have been saving them, as they are High Quality Items! Quite lovely! I figured I'd wait several years. However now that they are All About Princess Charlotte, I think they will be perfect for Next Christmas to be worn on Special Occasions! They are so nice that they will look sweet when they are in grade school & still sweet when they are young ladies! :) xo I thought they'd be fun, as they will be growing up in the same generation as Charlotte & George! :)

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    8. ๐ŸŒธ That’s so sweet and funny. Thanks for sharing all that Becca. :)

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  32. Caroline in Montana21 February 2018 at 17:29

    I like the coat, liked it better in the plum color. those are some of my favorite earrings and have show envy. I like that her hair is getting longer. She looks less pregnant today than she did yesterday - funny how clothes can do that! not a huge fan of the dress, I think the length hits her funny, they are better either ankle length or shorter, this in between looks off to me. I love how happy they look and concur, its impossible how good she looks in a hardhat and safety glasses. makes me wonder, does she just put them on or is there a mirror somewhere so she can check her look? beautiful old fire station, love how they renovated and use instead of tearing down!!

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  33. Your comment regarding the safety hat had me in stitches! I will have to track this particular hat down ;) Great post. Thank you.

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  34. Wow who can tell she will have a baby in two months. When I have kids someday hopefully I will look slim and pretty like her. I love her henna Tattoo. I love how she asked for bindi’s for Charlotte I am pretty sure she would love wearing them.

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  35. It is impossible -why Duchess looks great in everything not expect hard hat and glasses ?:)

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  36. ๐ŸŒธ James Whatling. Thank you. :)
    Charlotte. Thank you. :)

    You can tell he loves his job, and the Royal family. Talent and love. What a dynamic combo. :)

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  37. This coat makes her look so slim. Beautiful!

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  38. And the award for best hat in 2018 goes to... :)
    That image of Kate's hand with the henna is going on my Pinterest!

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    1. ๐ŸŒธ lol. Lacy. I think that is my favorite hat so far.

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  39. Nobody has ever worn a hard hat and safety glasses more beautifully. I LOVE what they did with this fire station! Thank you for providing all the background information about it. This looked like a fun engagement for the royals as well as the people.

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  40. Good day of engagements. Basic, supporting role of the monarchy for local businesses and community events. Kate and William seem to have enjoyed themselves. I really like that Kate got a small henna tattoo. I felt like it was her actually engaging in the community rather than just showing up to be seen.

    I think the dress was a great option for her. It's new but affordable. I do like the green coat. I really liked the plum one but am not sure it would fit her. This one has some different detailing on her right side, so I suspect it was designed to be a big bigger for later in the pregnancy. I understand the concern with buying new coats, but she might not fit in her other clothes and a new coat might have been necessary. It will be interesting to see what she wears next week into next month.

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  41. She looks even more Beautiful with the hard hat and the glasses! ๐Ÿ’• She's definitely the kind of person who would look great with a pair of glasses...who knows maybe in a few years getting older...

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  42. nobody can pull off that safety gesr just like that its i new coat i guess hmm i love the whole thing hmm and her small henna tatoo looks better she and prince william are great they are doing just prepping for the role as king and queen the duchess looks less pregnant todsy.

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  43. A lovely day of engagements - what the royal family does best. The crowds were large and William and Kate really enjoyed meeting them - Kate is amazing at bending down when she's so heavily pregnant and the photo of her with the lady in the wheelchair was so sweet.

    The bridge visit was a favourite of mine - love seeing Kate in the high visibility vest just like workers everywhere and William doing a touch of building. The royal couple's spirits seemed very high. The Fire Station is a splendid project - fun to see Kate get the henna tattoo.

    Green is surely Kate's colour - and not a bad choice if you are to wear a high visibility vest with a dress coat! If Kate makes it to the Irish Guards before she goes on maternity leave, it would be a nice choice - perhaps she's thinking of that. I'm not so sure of the buttons going down the front - it doesn't seem ideal when pregnant, but hopefully it can be tailored for use later for it is too nice a coat to only use when pregnant. The blue dress is charming and the length well balanced by the dark tights.

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    1. Tammy from California21 February 2018 at 23:56

      Julia, I have to agree with you. Green is a favorite color of mine on Kate. I seem to gravitate every year to the St. Patrick's Day shamrock hand-out. I always look forward to that, because I love the green.

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  44. Now that the extreme morning sickness is behind the Duchess of Cambridge, I don’t think I have ever seen a more vibrant and lovely pregnant woman. Looks like a fun day all around. Thanks, Charlotte.

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  45. Charlotte, your comment re the “hard hat”๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ.

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  46. Thank you so much for another swift and comprehensive post, Charlotte. I know she changed her shoes for boots at one stage, but some pictures seem to show that she even wore another pair of shoes to the event - look at this photo: http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2018/02/21/14/497087AA00000578-5417373-image-a-66_1519223235685.jpg

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    1. Hello Barbara,

      I believe those are the Tod's pumps. Kate changed immediately after that photo was taken.

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  47. Kate is still wearing bottle green and black. Evidently she decided to make the suffragette colors her badge of concern for women all this week. She looks lovely.

    Thank you, Charlotte, for the beautiful coverage of one event after another! Kate is keeping you busy, and you always give us beautiful posts.

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    1. When i looked again at the closeup photo of the lace dress Kate wore to the fashion event, I realized that the bold circles in the pattern are actually daisies. I wonder whether Kate wore that dress as a mark of respect for Queen Margrethe of Denmark. The queen’s husband had just died, and the daisy is her personal emblem.

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  48. Love this outfit and coat! She's just glowing, and I love that her hair is parted on the side! Yay! Just adorable.

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  49. Hee hee, Marcia. Kate is lovely, but I actually think I looked as vibrant and lovely while pregnant as she does:):). Kate is lovely, but she looks like many of us do when pregnant, and not dealing with pregnancy issues. Pregnant women tend to bloom:) and look really great. Most women are always really lovely all the time. Kate is lovely, strong, healthy, good diet, braces etc, but really when you look around many of us are just as lovely, just not the same money for hair and make up and clothes, or the same photo attention.

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  50. The Bollywood song 'Ghoomar' is one of my favourites and it's from a recent movie. Glad to know Kate could watch a perfomance. Personally, I don't wear bindis, but my mom does and I think it looks really chic. I just wish we could see Charlotte in one.
    Also, Kate looks like she's in a science lab with those glasses. Very cute.

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  51. Charlotte, do you think Kate will go on maternity leave before St. Patrick's Day? If so, do you think there's any chance Meghan would present shamrocks to the Irish guards in Kate's place? Harry and Meghan's tour of the UK has been taking them all over . . . perhaps this would present them with the perfect opportunity to visit Ireland before the wedding.

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    1. Hello Anon,

      I think it depends when Kate's due in April. She seems to be very close to the eighth month now. Next Wednesday's event at the NPG might be a good time to wrap up engagements, however there's been no official word. St Patrick's Day is over three weeks away. William would likely attend solo as he is colonel of the regiment.

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  52. What a lovely engagement and it was so clear how much they both enjoyed it and appear to still enjoy each others company.
    Recently we are seeing more of the real Kate on her engagements I very much doubt that a year ago she would have had a "tattoo" and she is so much more confident both making speeches and at functions. We also saw what a fun girl she is when visiting the bridge she and William appeared to be in their element at this less formal event.
    I am so glad they visited Sunderland an area that gets little Royal coverage and the weather was good it was clear from the crowds how much the people appreciated the visit. They need to do more away days together.
    Referring to the Fashion show although I do not like Erdem dresses I thought Kate looked nice in this one it fitted well the neckline was good and I suspect the fabric was rather more attractive when seen close to than appeared in the photographs. There was a very good full page article by Lisa Armstrong in yesterday's Telegraph describing the event in detail how it was organised and what took place it was written in a light heated manner. I imagine it was the first time she had seen Kate she said "Kate looks exactly as in pictures except even taller and far more animated."
    I look forward toe next weeks engagements I very much hope we will see her until Mid March I imagine it is possible she may be at the Commonwealth service on 12th March after what happened last year I would think W & K may be there. I believe she went on Maternity leave about the 20th March when expecting Charlotte.

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  53. Love an engagement with both William and Kate. Love the interaction between them, so sweet.
    Kate, is with out doubt glowing ! There's no other word I can think of to describe her.
    Touching image of Kate kneeling down and having a moment with Jane, who had probably waited quite a while on a cold Wednesday, to meet them.
    I was surprised to see yet another D&G coat, but when you look at how much she's grown since wearing the plum coloured coat, I doubt she'd have fitted into it. I hope she can have them altered, so that we can see them worn again after the pregnancy.
    Looking at Kate today, got me thinking I wonder what's she'll have, girl or boy ? The newspapers are rife, with odds as to what names they have in mind. We have a small sweepstake at work, with the monies going to charity. You have to guess gender and possible names. Does anyone on here have any ideas on possible names ? I've gone with her having a boy, and her calling him James. But if she was to have a girl, I quite like Eleanor. A name not used within the BRF for some time !
    Thanks to you Charlotte for yet another brilliant posting :-)

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    1. I guess it is that time to begin thinking seriously about gender & names! I can't believe she has an event March 6??? I have a hunch that she is due Early April! No biggie, as many women (like my daughter) work right up to the day they go into labor! However, we've just been used to her going out of sight before she got too close & definitely before she has become as heavily pregnant as she is now! Maybe it's the difference of it being her 3rd & now being a Full Time Royal? Thoughts? So for gender/names....... So if it's a boy, I agree with James! If it's a girl, possibly Mary, Victoria or Alexandra! (a little Vicki or Lexi?)

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    2. Prince Edward's son is James and he's only just 10 so I doubt they'll go with that. I want a girl called Elizabeth!

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    3. Charlotte’s second name is Elizabeth, so I’d think not. I’m going with Alice Victoria Mary because (with great affection for them) so far these two have shown absolutely no imagination at all in the child-naming arena, and that’s the least imaginative name I could think of. :-)

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    4. I think Alice is a good name if the baby is a girl.

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  54. New engagement just announced: 28 February - The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will take part in the first annual Royal Foundation Forum. The theme 'Making a Difference Together' will showcase programmes run by the Royal Foundation. William, Kate, Harry and Meghan will appear on stage together to discuss the foundation.

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    1. And another solo for Kate on 6 March..

      The Duchess of Cambridge will visit Pegasus Primary School in Oxford on 6th March to learn more about the work of the charity Family Links UK.

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    2. ๐ŸŒธ wow. the fab four together for an event. ๐ŸŽ‰just what we’ve been waiting for. drop the mic.

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    3. I think Kate’s due date is around April 15th. And I expect her last official engagement will be March 17th for St. Patrick’s Day. If she’s feeling ok, she might go to church on Easter by car, but that would be a private event.

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    4. Wow! Kaboom! We Are On!!! :) The Fab Four Kickoff!!! :) xoxo

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    5. Wow, I wasn't sure we'd get any engagements from her in March! It's a pleasant surprise. I'm also excited to see an official event with the four of them. I hope there are a few more of these sprinkled throughout each year.

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    6. I also like that they are calling it "The Royal Foundation", no longer "The Royal Foundation of The Duke & Duchess of Cambridge & Prince Harry"! Instead of adding a 4th name, it's Much More Stream Lined to go with "The Royal Foundation"! I Like It!!! In case they needed my stamp of approval! lol :) xoxo

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    7. ๐ŸŒธ Becca USA. It bodes nicely for content when the title is perfected. :)

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  55. Side Note. A story similar to William and Kate’s.
    Princess Grace of Monaco’s grandson is marrying his university sweetheart. Both met while attending a university in North Carolina. Dated for five years.
    She worked as a cashier in a store to help offset college expenses so she has worked in the real world. Now she works as an event planner and coordinator for the Palace in Monaco (an unreal world, lol)
    and her fiancรฉ promotes sports in Monaco.
    Oh, and his mother is Princess Stephanie, Princess Grace’s daughter. Stephanie married a “commoner” (her bodyguard), also, the Prince’s father. So happy Royals are marrying who they choose to marry.
    Kate, Meghan, be encouraged.

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    1. I think, technically, Stรฉphanie’s children are not prince/princess, and neither are Caroline’s (other than the last one whose father is a prince of Hanover). But still relevant to our interests. :-)

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    2. ๐ŸŒธ Juniper. thanks. I didn’t know that.

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  56. Lovely day of events for William and Kate. I love the pictures on the bridge, just terrific. Looking forward to seeing the four of them at the Royal Foundation Forum.

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  57. Thank you so much for this whole post, Charlotte - fun and very interesting! Whew, they’ve certainly been busy, and it looks like it’s going to continue for a few weeks. I’m so glad you chose to include James Whatling’s photo of Kate at the end - that wholehearted laugh is so great to see! I still can’t get over the fact that she doesn’t look at all pregnant from the front in the photos at the top of this post. Can’t wait for the “Making a Difference Together” engagement - they will all be engaged in the discussion which should be wonderful introduction to “The Fab Four” working together!

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  58. I'm so excited to hear about the joint engagement of the Cambridges plus H&M!! Isn't that what we had been looking forward to for so long? :)

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  59. The events on 28 February and 6 March will be very interesting, especially seeing the four together to discuss the Foundation.

    When the number of comments reaches 200, remember the Load More button at the bottom of the page! That will give you the most recent comments, and you will need to click it again each time we have 50 additional comments.

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  60. At first glance, I thought this was the same coat she'd worn on the Scandinavian tour. I love military style buttons and Kate must, too. I have to admit that the Seraphine dresses have yet to impress me. I can't remember one that I've liked or thought was pretty. They must be comfortable, though, since Kate really seems to favor the brand when pregnant.

    I do wonder when she'll go on maternity leave. I hope she won't be away from engagements forever once the baby is born. Since she seems to have stepped up her workload this year, I wonder if that means she'll be back sooner than in the past?

    I've not had kids, yet, but I still wonder how on earth Kate can wear heels and bend over as if it were nothing. I only hope to be as limber as that when the time comes LOL

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  61. Probably my favorite post of all time!!! All I can say is Bless Her Heart!! She looks amazing and really happy! I am sure she needs some R and R, even with a nanny for George and Charlotte I am sure her day doesn’t end when the cameras turn off, what a trooper!! This makes me have so much respect for her going out into the public on her feet this late in her pregnancy. I can just imagine little George and Charlotte when they get home from school saying mama this and mama that, I imagine she gives them her undivided attention at night. I hope she gets a proper break after the baby comes!! And her dress looks wonderful, it flatters her much more than the frilly thing she wore the other night!

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  62. Ladies, I really dont want to offend anyone, but I dont understand why so many comment the movements she is apparently still able to do, and in general that she is doing engagements "that late in pregancy".
    In a healthy pregancy, which Kate luckally has appart from morning sickness in early pregnancy, this is really not a big deal. Its a super good sign that this is a healthy pregnancy, thank God, but not more than that. More than enough pregnant women work until due date, do sports during pregnancy, etc, if there are no complications :)

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    1. Anon, 19:39, agree, pregnancy for many, if you do not have complications does not change much for a woman. I did my same job, same at home activities, for 9 months. I did my same sports for 8 months. I slowed down on my tennis cause it was just not comfy the last month. But I wore high heels. cute clothes, etc etc. for all nine months.I mean it is a gradual change over 9 months, you adjust. :):)

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  63. The Prince of Wales will be in Australia from the 4th through the 10th of April. The Duchess of Cornwall will accompany him for the first part of the trip, and they will attend the Opening of the Commonwealth Games. I wonder whether Charles will miss the birth of his next grandchild.

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  64. Kate looks gorgeous I love this coat. She is one of a very few women that look gorgeous in a construction outfit!

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